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Israel Adrián Caetano
El otro (The Other) is an Argentine film made in 2007, directed by Ariel Rotter. It's a small film about a middle-aged man, who suddenly becomes a father when his own father is dying. It is a movie about a man's identity crisis.
A middle-aged man (Julio Chávez) who is taking care of his old father finds out that his wife is pregnant. In result of this he leaves his home and goes for a "business-trip". He walks down the vacant streets of Argentina and tries to find his place. In every situation where he has to introduce himself, he uses a different name, a different identity.
The Other is a very quiet film. There's not much of dialog and not much happen in it. It's very minimalistic. But this makes the visual narrative even more important. The director let's us observe on our own and make our own interpretations.
Ten minutes in and you will notice something unusual about the camera-work. The camera isn't moving, it doesn't follow the characters. This can be interpreted philosophically. The camera stays still, it takes distance to the main character. It just shows him walking down the streets, movement, but the camera itself doesn't move. So what we see is a man walking but not really moving forward. His life stays still. He is a prisoner of this stable situation that he cannot detach from. It's quite interesting to see if he'll find a solution? Will he be able to detach from his stable life?
So who is The Other? Is it the man's other identity or is it the other father? Is it the man he never came? The shots of The Other are very beautiful. The man walking the empty streets, filling an empty chair. Beautiful film I must say. I will probably remember The Other from its minimalism: It doesn't have music at all, the dialog is marginal and it doesn't have a certain climax. I will also remember the good cinematography, which let the viewer to observe, think and get satisfied by the solutions.
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